- Course: Appetizer, Main Course
- Skill Level: Moderate
- Cost: Inexpensive
- Favorited: 12 Times
- Approximately 12 small littleneck clams per person, well-scrubbed
For the Sauce:
- 1 cup melted butter
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tablespoons minced parsley
- 1 tablespoon chopped tarragon leaves
- 1 tablespoon chopped chives
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Place the clams in the freezer for 10 minutes before cooking.
Prepare the sauce: In a small saucepan, bring the butter to a simmer over medium-low heat. Pour into a glass measuring cup and let stand 5 minutes. Skim off and discard the foam on top. Pour the clarified butter into a bowl, discarding the milky residue. Add the garlic, parsley, tarragon, and chives. Season with pepper to taste and set aside.
In a large covered steamer kettle, bring 1 cup cold water to a rolling boil over high heat. Place the clams in the steamer basket, cover, and cook the clams just until they open. (Peek in after about 4 minutes.) Using tongs or a slotted spoon, begin transferring the open clams to a large bowl. Discard any that do not open.
Strain the clam juice through a fine sieve into the butter mixture, leaving any sand in the bottom of the kettle; heat slightly. Season with the pepper. Divide the clams evenly among warm soup bowls and cover with sauce.
To grill the clams: Prepare a charcoal fire. When the coals are dusty and glowing, place the clams on the grill. As they open, use long tongs to transfer them to a large bowl. Use the clam juice that collects in the bottom of the bowl to make the sauce.
© 1997 Christopher Idone